Each Year, 1-in-3 People Over 65 Suffer Falls at Home

Friday, July 17, 2009 at 10:36 AM

One-third of all people over 65 suffer falls in their home, a problem that affects both the physical and emotional well-being of the elderly. As many as 25 percent of people 75 or over restrict the activities they undertake because of fear of falling, according to a 1996 study by Colorado State University professors K.R. Tremblay Jr. and C.E. Barber.

The medical alert provider BrickHouse Alert has become the first medical alert service to offer a fall alert detector, technology that will notify the company's operators that the device's wearer has fallen and can't push a button to seek help.

BrickHouse medical alert systemThis personal emergency response system (PERS) is designed for parents and grandparents who live alone and may become stricken with no one around to help them. It provides an added level of reassurance for people whose loved ones desire their independence as they get older.

For added security, the company has developed a GPS tracking bracelet with a two-way speakerphone. Wearers can use the phone to call for help. Also, the GPS system in the phone enables a person's whereabouts to be tracked if he or she has gone missing. This service provides particular comfort to the family members of an Alzheimer's victim.

In an emergency, the operator can call up to three people along with emergency personnel if needed. All devices are waterproof so they can be worn in the shower.

To set up the service, all that's required is to plug a console into any phone jack. Pricing for the BrickHouse medical alert service is $34.95 a month and requires as little as a three-month contract. A $199.95 deposit is required for the hardware, but this can be refunded.